Monday, November 23, 2009

Lemon Luxury Cake

A brief write-up, as I'm so late with my post. I did a half-size cake again in 6" pans, as I did for the Red Velvet and the Almond Shamah Chiffon. Several things went wrong, or at least not optimally--I'm having a string of this sort of thing and I'm not used to it. Generally my baking turns out as expected, with a few exceptions where I know I made a mistake. No so much lately, and I'm trying to figure out why.

One thing was a mistake I can pinpoint. I was moving back and forth between the frosting and the cake, trying to get the frosting done for its 'resting' time. I think I let the white chocolate for the cake get a little too cool, and when I added it to the mixing bowl I got white chocolate chunks (small ones) in the batter instead of an integrated mixture. I didn't see any way to fix this without causing further problems, so I went with it. I'll blame the resulting cake texture--a little coarse, and one layer sank a little--on that. This is very visible on the picture of the split layer.

The real unexplained problem is that as with the Almond Shamah, also made in the 6" pans, the sides snagged and tore as I ran a spatula around the cake before unmolding. Plenty of frosting covered up the mess, but clearly something's not right here. Maybe the too-long cake strips are keeping the sides of the layers from firming up enough? But the chocolate Red Velvet Cake was also baked in the 6" pans with these cake strips, and it came out fine. I do think I'll go buy a second heavy-weight pan, as my current pair are mismatched--one is a 'pro' series, the other the line Wilton sells at craft stores like Michaels. Ah, forced to make another trip to Cake Art! And maybe I need to cut off the extra length of a set of even-bake strips to fit these smaller pans.

I bought my lemon curd--I've made curd (lime) before for a lime-blueberry tart in the Pie & Pastry Bible and, as I was still trying to get caught back up after my 10 days at Disney World, I decided the jarred stuff was fine. The buttercream process went smoothly, though it stayed quite soft. Like others, I didn't see the point in the 'resting' period, and my frosting looked just the same at the end as at the beginning.

My tasters liked the cake, despite the problems. I couldn't get it quite to room temperature before we served it, so the interior frosting layer was too cold and came across almost as a chunk of white chocolate. The cake texture was not very smooth, as I said before, but the cake had a nice flavor and the texture was certainly not objectionable. I'll give this cake another try sometime, when next I have an occasion for a lemon cake.

Woody's Lemon Luxury CakeWoody's Lemon Luxury CakeWoody's Lemon Luxury CakeWoody's Lemon Luxury CakeWoody's Lemon Luxury Cake

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